At Grayson Monáe, we believe in Empowering Women. Our company genuinely believes that every woman deserves a beautiful pair of Flats that she can conquer the world in.
Our shoes are 100% handmade by talented artisans in India and shipped from the states. They are made with 100% genuine leather. Everything from the embroidery to the stitching, to the pearl and bead placement, to the unique designs make them one-of-a-kind classics.
When choosing artisans to collaborate with, it was important for us to support female entrepreneurship.
That's when we found Shivangi.
Her and her embroiderers have been creating shoes for years. She built her business in a male-dominated culture where women are often pushed to the side. Despite these challenges, she has built a thriving business and has become a role model for other women in her community.
It’s the freedom entrepreneurship brings with it and the fact that every day is different and comes with its own unique set of challenges, that's what I love!
This journey has taught me patience and the importance of preparation, as well as the importance of failing, rising and learning from mistakes.
I begin as a single mother of a six month old girl and faced a lot of challenges while trying to turn my struggle into a dream. As a designer, I always wanted to create stylish and unique footwear. Stylish and unique flats, in particular, are very rare in the marketplace.
It was really challenging for a single woman to work in a male- dominated business. But I did not give up. We created a small unit of a few workers working together.
My company currently employs 40 artisans and works closely with embroiderers. We try to incorporate impeccable craftmanship with every jutti by using different fabrics, embroideries, and embellishments. Every pair of our jutties come with double cushioning for added comfort. While the regular juttis carry a vegetable-tanned genuine leather sole.
For me, the daily challenge and thrill is constant innovation.
We sketch our designs on paper first before creating embroideries on fabric.
Then from the sketch it’s pinned to trace on the cloth for embroidery. We use various raw materials to make embroideries like, beads, sequins, threads ( cotton, zari, silk etc), and a dabka (delicate, tightly coiled spring used to create intricate embroidery patterns. All these are put together with a tool called Aari Tari or needles with plastic threads so that they do not fall off easily while making.
Then after fabric has been embroidered it is taken to pasting room where we cut and paste the fabric on canvas. The canvas is white in color so that it provides a good base to the fabric pasted over it. Then the canvas is pasted on leather, both sides, in the front and at the back of the jutti
After this process the uppers are taken to the stitch room The sole is made in which we use vegetable tanned buffalo leather for the base. 18 mm of high density foam is pasted over that and then a layer of cow leather lining is used to make a complete sole. The front and back of the sole are stitched together.
After this process is complete, then we put wooden last in the jutti to get the perfect fitting size for every pair and to get extra leather trimmed off. The final output is a beautiful work of art that we hope you love.
Thank you for going through our process and our journey of work.